Syngenta’s chairman told a Swiss newspaper this week that the company is indeed in talks with Monsanto and ChemChina along with other rivals, but has yet to receive a concrete takeover offer from those companies. Chairman Michel Demare said the talks continue and that “Given what shareholders expect for the next 12 months, going it alone is hardly possible,” Demare said Syngenta’s board, which this year opposed a takeover offer from Monsanto, was considering making an acquisition, merging with a rival or selling the company. He declined to say which option he preferred, according to Reuters. The seeds and crop industry is undergoing a major shake-up, with DuPont and Dow Chemical announcing an all-stock merger valued at $130 billion this month. Demare said Syngenta had concluded a deal was necessary after Monsanto’s approach; adding that a combination with DuPont would have made a lot of sense for Syngenta.
Shareholders are pressuring for the company to make a move along with the industry consolidation. Industry executives expect 2016 will be another tough year given low commodity prices and weak investment by farmers.